|Marika's in da house|
That said, I didn't cook the month I spent in Venice in 2001. Mostly I was being lazy (heh, I really didn't cook much the month before I went to Venice...or the month after...or really much during my college years...or in the years since then...) but there was also intimidation factoring in there. I get along pretty well in Italian, in spite of never learning it, but I can't rely on it. At this point in the game I can look at a package, make some inferences, and 9 times out of 10 I'll come out ahead, but I didn't have those coping skills fourteen years ago. I'm making up for it this week. My final AirBnB host, Lorenzo, showed me my shelf in the refrigerator, and I thought to myself, "Heh, not likely." And then I went to dinner and spent 25 euro on gnocchi and water, and had to reevaluate. So I'm experimenting, and it's been nice.
|Fresh gnocchi - a new way I'm willing to eat potatoes|
|Ravioli stuffed with fresh cheeses|
|Tortellini with meaty goodness filling|
Alright, probably I can. Remember: I'm lazy.
|One finished product: tagliatelli in buttery sage sauce|
|The grand finale: panna cotta alla fragolina di bosco|
So I walked straight across the island to the beach. I had time before we started cooking. I didn't have to go that far to tell that there was a difference. Almost all the people I passed were living there - having a breakfast espresso and brioche, moving slowly and enjoying life, not taking shitloads of photos. Out at the beach, there were a handful of people. Admittedly, it was 9:30 in the bright and early, and I'm sure it was busier the later it got, but I don't do the beach in the afternoon, so this was good enough for me.
I went back the next day. I was a little pissed at first - apparently I was too early for the first #2 vaporetto, and had to take linea 1 instead (which stops at every freaking point along the way. I could have SWAM there faster than that!) But it was a cool morning, and I had a chocolate brioche before hitting the beach, where I laid out my towel before walking into the water. It was chilly, but I've been taking partly cold showers at Lorenzo's (mostly because it's so hot here that it actually feels good), so I adjusted quickly enough. I relaxed, floating in the water, rocking to the rhythm of the waves, and when I decided I'd had enough, laid in the shade under a boardwalk (which, as far as I could tell was built for no other purpose than to throw shade) and read. If that's not a great way to start a morning, I don't know what is.